In this Revenue Weekly video, Dylan from the WebFX Earned Media team covers the basics of voice search marketing (including five voice search SEO tips).
Transcript: Dylan: Find fast food restaurants near me. Phone: When was the last time you ate fruit? Dylan: Not every voice assistant questions your life choices, but they do play a part in the rise of voice search marketing. In the U.S. alone, it’s said that about a quarter of adults have at least one smart speaker of their own. So think along the lines of Google Home or Amazon Echo. On an even larger scale, about a third of people who use the web use voice search on their mobile devices. Getting a smart speaker or phone to read something from your website as a search result takes time and effort.
And in this video, I’m going to tell you how you can use voice search optimization to have your results discovered by a voice assistant. Phone: Don’t go anywhere.
What is voice search marketing?
Voice search marketing means optimizing your website so that voice assistants like Siri or Alexa can find it when people ask for a certain query. A query may be something like, “Find hair salons near me,” or “What’s the capital of Wyoming?” It’s Cheyenne if you weren’t sure. I asked.
What is voice search SEO?
As I mentioned, having your website in the voice search results takes some optimization, known as voice search SEO. Don’t get too worried. SEO for voice search overlaps with your traditional SEO strategy, so you won’t have too much additional work on your plate. Now, if you aren’t following SEO best practices, I can’t guarantee that statement is true.
5 voice search marketing tips
I’m sure you want to hear some tips about how to optimize for voice searches, so I’ll get right to it.
1. Write like a person
I wasn’t really sure the best way to put this. But you’re not writing for robots…I hope. More specific to this situation, you should create content that reads like a conversation. Think about how you phrase things when you interact with a virtual assistant. Dylan: What’s the square root of 144? Phone: Do you really need me for this? Dylan: I’d say there’s a good chance that if you want information from your phone or smart speaker, you ask a question.
When you want the answer to a math equation, you don’t say “144 square root.” You simply ask the question. Your website needs to use conversational language in order to contend for the top voice search spots. So when you’re looking up voice search keywords, try to stick with ones that sound like a human would say them.
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2. Shoot for the stars (with your rankings)
In general, clinching the top spot in the search results, or being in the top, is great for your website. You’ll earn some serious web traffic and boost leads and sales if your site is set up properly. The same goes for voice search marketing. About 41% of voice search results use answers from a featured snippet. A featured snippet, also known as position zero, appears for some searches as a large box at the top of the search results with a page’s title and an answer pulled from that page directly addressing the search query. You can optimize for featured snippets in a few ways, namely by:
- Formatting sections of your website with questions and answers
- Creating a list of items that relate to a search query
- Creating a table with comparison data
So, for example, if you run a college prep business and want to explain the difference between public and private loans, you might want to use the heading, “What are the differences between public and private loans?” and immediately follow that with an answer. I’m not saying these are the only ways to claim position zero, but they are helpful if they work with your content. Google’s also getting smarter when it comes to how it processes language, so making it easy for people to get answers can help you with voice search SEO and regular SEO.
3. Update your contact information
Dylan: Book stores near me. Phone: Not until you finish the books you have. Dylan: Back in 2017, searches that used “near me” increased by 150% on Google. If you don’t have updated—or any—contact information online, you’re missing out on the “near me” and other local voice search results. When people use voice search keywords focused on finding businesses close to them, the results typically include a business’s name and contact information. Make sure your business profile is updated anywhere people can search for you, like Google, Bing, and Apple Maps. If you’re not on any of those platforms, it’s probably best to get on them.
4. Promote your content
A study from Backlinko notes that voice search results typically get a lot of attention on social media. So if you’ve optimized a page for voice search, think about sharing it on social media. If you’re not on social media, now’s the time to expand your digital presence. The more people who see your content through social media, the more likely it is they’ll spend time on your website and even possibly link to your website with theirs. If Google sees people linking to your website and more people clicking on your search result, it can help you rank higher.
Ranking higher, as I said before, helps your business grow…in addition to getting recognized by voice assistants. Everything works together.
5. Get to the point
How would you feel if this happened to you? Dylan: What is Newton’s Second Law of Motion? Phone: Newton’s first name was Isaac. He was born in the 17th century. Newton has three Laws of Motion that you should know, one of which is the Second Law of Motion. All you wanted was an answer to your physics question, but you got a basic overview of Isaac Newton. The lesson?
Get to the point! People want answers to their questions, and they don’t want to hear something irrelevant. According to that same Backlinko study I mentioned before, the typical Google voice search result is only 29 words. Don’t meander if you want to master voice search SEO. Save people some time and frustration and answer their questions.
If you follow these five tips, you’ll be on your way to voice search marketing success!
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